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Executive Director - WISH Drop In Centre Society

Apr 12, 2024
Vancouver, British Columbia

A Rare Opportunity in a Unique & Exceptional Organization

Building on the hard work of previous leadership, peers, volunteers, staff, and Board members, the next Executive Director of WISH will ensure the ongoing relevance, viability and sustainability of this incredible organization. WISH is a sector leader with an incredibly committed team of staff and volunteers excited to deliver on their mission through partnership, collaboration, and program and service innovation that brings together people, land based practices, ideas, systems, processes and technology. 

If you are a skilled operational leader with the ability to demonstrate the centring of street-based sex workers and intersectional organizational values in your leadership then WISH is the place for you. Come join a team that centers a strong intersectional feminist, anti-racism, anti-oppression lens and voice that is trauma-informed.

About WISH

WISH is the largest sex worker support organization in Canada and is located on the unceded, stolen lands of the xʷməθkʷəy̓ əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱ wú7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) First Nations. For 40 years, WISH has been a refuge and an essential point of contact for street-based sex workers in Vancouver. Based in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, WISH’s connection to the land is central to the work we do and our efforts to decolonize that work.  Our mission is to improve the health, safety and well-being of women who are involved in Vancouver’s street-based sex trade. Our vision is for every woman to have access to opportunities to make free, healthy and positive choices.  WISH is a non-judgmental place of compassion and trust where all women are valued.    Many of those who walk through their doors have experienced targeted, gender-based, and sexualized violence and are often dehumanized and stigmatized because of the work they do. They have been impacted by the criminalized nature of Canada’s laws surrounding sex work, and face significant discrimination due to systemic inequities. For more information about WISH and our programs and services, visit our website.

Role Overview

The Executive Director has overall responsibility for strategic leadership and operational management of the organization in alignment with its Vision, Mission and Values. This includes responsibility for compliance with all policies, funding requirements and relevant legislation to ensure the efficient and effective running of the organization.

Target Start Date:
As soon as possible

The primary location for this position is Vancouver, BC. This is an on-site role.

The Executive Director typically works out of WISH’s offices, however the mission of the organization may require work in the community and in non-standard workplaces.

Salary Range:
$125,000 – $140,000

We offer an excellent health & welfare benefits plan, 6% vacation accrual (3 weeks per year); 12 health & wellness days paid every year; annual week office closure in December; 14 statutory holidays, paid meal breaks, welcoming team-based office culture in a location that is close to transit.

This position is a full-time permanent position, 40 hours a week.

There may be occasional requirements to work evenings, weekends, and overtime hours to accommodate activities such as programs, Board meetings and representing the organization at public events.


Reporting to the Board of Directors, in this role you will:

  • Operationalize WISH’s mission and the strategic objectives of the organization in conjunction with the Board of Directors. 
  • Build a culture centring the lived experiences and expertise, dignity, agency, choices, and safety of sex workers and WISH participants at the heart of all work.
  • Provide stewardship of WISH programs and services and implementation of the organizational strategic plan, operational plan, and any other related plans and initiatives. 
  • Employ a leadership style that values and demonstrates respect, equity, teamwork, transparency and accountability.  
  • Lead and ensure the management of the day-to-day operations of WISH including operational planning and management; program planning, evaluation and quality assurance; resource development; financial planning and oversight; human resource management; community relations; communications – media, advocacy, community and outreach related initiatives; risk management; maintenance and safety of the physical site(s) and general administration.
  • Provide leadership to ensure that a good working relationship is maintained with the union representing some WISH staff and that the organization is effectively represented in discussions with the union.  
  • Collaboratively create new community partnerships and improve and nurture existing partnerships. 
  • Participate at events organized by various community, city and provincial agencies to bring awareness to WISH’s purpose and programs.
  • Promote emotional and psychological safety of WISH’s team members by supporting wellness initiatives in partnership with the HR team.
  • Actively build a culture centered towards an anti-racist, anti-oppressive, decolonizing, feminist space that endeavors to be safe(r) for people who experience oppression based upon their gender.
  • Act as a liaison and resource to the Board of Directors and Board Committees, to facilitate their work within WISH’s governance model. 

We are looking for someone who has:

  • Experience or lived expertise working in processes that can meaningfully center
    the voices of street-based sex workers.
  • Experience or lived expertise in, and deep commitment to, decolonizing and
    anti-oppressive principles and practices.
  • Familiarity with the Downtown Eastside in the Lower Mainland/Vancouver.
  • Strong operational, programmatic and financial leadership experience with a minimum of 5 years as an Executive Director or CEO or a minimum of 7 years of progressive experience in senior leadership roles within non-profit, social service and social impact sectors.
  • A post-secondary education in non-profit management, social service work, and/or public administration, or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Strong experience in financial management including budget preparation, financial projections, expenditure control, and successful grant proposal writing.
  • A demonstrated ability to work effectively and build professional relationships with a broad range of funders, community organizations, government, and media.
  • A prolabour management style with extensive experience with collective bargaining and managing within a unionized work environment.
  • Experience in leading and developing a multi-disciplinary and diverse staff.
  • Superior judgment skills and ability to make quick, insightful decisions.
  • Self-starter energy and skills with a strong work ethic and the ability to triage numerous complex tasks and competing priorities.
  • The ability to work on a broad scope of projects simultaneously.
  • Demonstrable values alignment and an unwavering ability to support the vision, mission and objectives of WISH.
  • A strong intersectional feminist analysis and anti-oppression, anti-racism, anti-Indigenous racism and anti-Black racism praxis and possesses significant understanding and knowledge of systemic barriers and oppression rooted in colonization, racism, transphobia, classism, misogyny, moralism, ableism and how they impact sex workers.
  • Experience with media, providing analysis and acting as a public spokesperson for an organization.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills.
  • High level of technological acuity including Google Workspace, MS Office Suite, SLACK and other SaaS.
  • Solid experience with conflict management and resolution.
  • Experience reporting to and working with a diverse Board of Directors, including supporting the retention and engagement of those directors.

Application Process

At WISH, we take our commitment to diversity, inclusion and reconciliation very seriously. To honour this commitment, we strongly encourage women with lived expertise in sex work, Indigenous women, Black women, women of colour, trans women, and members of other equity-seeking groups to apply. 

Interested applicants should submit a resume and cover letter (max 1 page) in a PDF format using this form. Your cover letter should let us know why this is your job! Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis as received up until April 5th, 2024 at 4:00 p.m PST. We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.

WISH is committed to providing accommodation upon request at all stages of the hiring process. If you require accommodation during the hiring process, please contact us at

No telephone inquiries please. We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only applicants selected for an interview will be contacted. For more information on WISH Drop-in Centre Society visit


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